Filmmakers expose shameful kangaroo slaughter
About the Film
When Australian filmmakers Mick McIntyre and Kate McIntyre Clere went out with their camera crew on a kangaroo hunt, they had to witness horrific images they can never forget.
“It’s, it’s just . . . ,” Mick stammered to find the right words. “I had to experience it filming and there’s nothing good about it. There’s nothing moral about it.”
“It’s very tough,” said Kate of her experience directing Kangaroo: A Love-Hate Story, and it remains very tough to see those images.”
Making a film that includes grotesque brutality is always a challenge: You don’t want to repel viewers, but you also must be honest about two million wild kangaroos systematically shot each year in Australia, in part, so Nike and adidas can sell soccer shoes all over the world.
“People in America who are buying soccer cleats don’t know that wild kangaroos are being shot for their soccer cleats. That’s the key,” declares Mick.
And yet the film also shows the beauty and majesty of kangaroos in a way no other film has. They used drones and a very long lens to capture astonishing poignant moments of the notoriously shy animals.
“I’m a proud Australian,” Mick says, “but I’m really ashamed how we are treating this animal. It’s just a shameful, shameful thing.”
The McIntryes’ film is sweeping film festivals with honors and will be released for worldwide streaming on May 1, 2020. They expect the size of the audience to explode. It’s already created a searing debate — especially in Australia where the McIntyres say there is a surprising lack of awareness that millions of the iconic Australian marsupial are being slaughtered for their skin and meat that’s used mainly for pet food, and in lesser amounts, human consumption.
The film seeks to debunk the notion that kangaroos are pests that interfere with ranchers and farmers who, ironically, have taken over the land where kangaroos traditionally roam. Australian authorities allow farmers and ranchers to kill kangaroos indiscriminately.
The film has drawn incendiary criticism from the kangaroo industry and from the Australian government that permits the slaughter and is subsidizing the industry hoping to create markets around the world for people to eat kangaroo meat. The Australian Minister of Culture even called the McIntryres “treasonous,” the couple said with a nervous laugh.
And, not uncommon in today’s social media, there have been “numerous death threats,” the McIntyres report. “It’s disturbing.” But Kate and Mick say they remain undaunted.
Indeed, the McIntyres have created their own nonprofit to continue raising awareness of the kangaroo slaughter and a GoFundMe page to support those caring for injured kangaroos.
So passionate are the McIntyres that they acknowledge the $1.3 million film budget has left them in debt. “But we’re so proud of what the film has done,” Kate commented. “We’re very proud of the action that’s going on in Europe and the action that’s going on in the US,” said Mick.
They are seeing a national — and soon to be global — conversation about the commercial slaughter of millions of wild kangaroos.
“We really feel like the film has ignited that,” said Kate. Adds Mick, “Time to shine a light on the Kangaroo issue.”
Meet the filmmakers
Over the past 5 years filmmakers Mick McIntyre and Kate McIntyre Clere dedicated themselves to finding out the full story around the treatment of kangaroos in Australia.
They have have committed themselves to do all they can to protect this magnificent wildlife both in Australia and internationally.
Support the filmmakers
Please support Mick and Kate’s nonprofit KANGAROOS ALIVE — a global movement for the ethical treatment of kangaroos.
KANGAROOS ALIVE provides funds for; emergency care to kangaroos in fire regions and ongoing care for kangaroo injuries from commercial shooters, road and fence accidents.
Help KANGAROOS ALIVE make Australia a safe place for kangaroos.